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Adventure Writing

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Storytelling has always been about adventure, from early epics such as the Odyssey and Iliad, to modern day thrillers, sagas, memoirs, and even science fiction.

Discover what makes a gripping tale, the basic elements of plot, and how to develop convincing, compelling characters that you and your reader will love.

We will explore the many genres of the adventure writing form, read widely across cultures, and also learn the essentials of world building, whether writing from real life or purely from the imagination.

Writers of all experience are welcome to come and adventure into adventure writing!

Learning and teaching

The module will be delivered through ten two-hour sessions, made up of lectures, class discussions, small group work and debates.

Class sessions will be supplemented by resources available to students via Learning Central. For online delivery, classes will held via Zoom.

Topics may include:

  • epics and traditional stories
  • thrillers
  • science fiction
  • adventure writing and genre (short story, novel flash forms, and memoir).

Coursework and assessment

To award credits we need to have evidence of the knowledge and skills you have gained or improved.

Some of this has to be in a form that can be shown to external examiners so that we can be absolutely sure that standards are met across all courses and subjects.

The most important element of assessment is that it should enhance your learning. Our methods are designed to increase your confidence and we try very hard to devise ways of assessing you that are enjoyable and suitable for adults with busy lives.

Students will complete a creative writing portfolio and write reflectively about their own process. The portfolio will be around 1,500 words in length.

In addition, your course tutor also promotes the Wilbur Smith Adventure Writing Prize and will let you know about all the very latest adventure writing resources and opportunities.

Reading suggestions

You will be provided with a range of relevant extracts and examples by your course tutor.

Library and computing facilities

As a student on this course you are entitled to join and use the University’s library and computing facilities. Find out more about using these facilities.


Our aim is access for all. We aim to provide a confidential advice and support service for any student with a long term medical condition, disability or specific learning difficulty. We are able to offer one-to-one advice about disability, pre-enrolment visits, liaison with tutors and co-ordinating lecturers, material in alternative formats, arrangements for accessible courses, assessment arrangements, loan equipment and dyslexia screening.